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View Full Version : Best light and distance to use with baking?



Philly85
02-29-2012, 02:33 PM
Hey what should I be weary of when baking textures to UV Map for computer game models?

I usually use Area light for baking because it lights up areas well but when I bake it sometimes leaves holes or black areas.

What is the best light to use? and what is the best distance from camera to use?

Or any other tips please, thanks :)

I'm using crazy bump for normal maps and projecting the textures first that are bumped then using surface baking camera to render everything to the UV Map.

Sensei
02-29-2012, 02:46 PM
IMHO- you shouldn't use any lights while baking textures and nodes to images ;)

I have made even command SurfaceBakingLights tool which you can find at http://www.trueart.pl
which is turning off all lights and leaves just raw RGB data.

Baking with lights is good for interiors and exteriors (if you never intend to change weather or day time).

If you will bake lights on character which is moving, transforming it will look no good. Lights should be added to moving character and items by game engine. Character/item should also cast shadow to the scene, but it's not job for LW but game engine.

For baking characters people use Occlusion shaders/nodes.

Sensei
02-29-2012, 02:58 PM
If you're not familiar with occlusion shaders here is couple videos
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Lwr6D1CVk8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFkF4PcOAug
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNQtwzVGmsM

Occlusion sends rays in all directions to check whether there is geometry close to spot, and if so, darkening spot. So corners will be darker than straight wall. See end of last video. That looks quite good.

Philly85
02-29-2012, 03:04 PM
Thanks guys will take a look in a minute, crazy bump lets you do occlusion instead of normal so will give that a try.

Philly85
02-29-2012, 03:22 PM
Do u have a trial version of that? don't have 50 dollars on me lol.

Sensei
02-29-2012, 03:42 PM
Do u have a trial version of that? don't have 50 dollars on me lol.

Of what?
SurfaceBakingLights is for free.

Philly85
02-29-2012, 03:46 PM
lol so it is , im sorry was looking at the wrong one lol

Philly85
02-29-2012, 04:21 PM
This tool is fantastic thanks so much mate :D

Can I still use normal maps now though? Occlusion seems to be great for shadows but seeing as my models are really low poly and most of the detail is in the texture normal maps seem the best thing for me to use?

Sensei
02-29-2012, 04:27 PM
Use Occlusion II node, it will take Normal and Bump into account.

Philly85
02-29-2012, 04:29 PM
Actually when I bake it with normal map looks horrible when exported all blurry :(

Should I just bake the texture without the normal maps?

Philly85
02-29-2012, 04:34 PM
Because this is the method I am using at the moment if it makes sense...

I pick single surfaces for example will select one side of a house instead of four and texture them individually planar projected onto the model...

Use normal map in Lightwave then surface baking camera, only trouble is looks stunning before you bake the texture but once its baked and the UV is wrapped it looks **** and blurry,

Sensei
02-29-2012, 04:36 PM
Better show screen-shots and/or attach scene..

Texture should be at minimum 1024x1024, the more the better. You need to optimize space, so as much is used.

Sensei
02-29-2012, 04:39 PM
btw, did you used Occlusion II node, but didn't turn off Interpolation?

Sensei
02-29-2012, 05:12 PM
I have made ball, default settings, but sub-patched.

Then main UV map, default sphere.

So you can remake it.

Then used Occlussion II node, connected to Diffuse Shading, bake it.

http://forums.newtek.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=102232&stc=1&d=1330559871

Then added 3D Textures > Crumple and connected to Bump.

http://forums.newtek.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=102233&stc=1&d=1330559987

http://forums.newtek.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=102234&stc=1&d=1330560461

288 polygons and see how much of details because of Occlusion and procedural texture that has been baked to image.

Philly85
02-29-2012, 05:41 PM
Hey mate cannot find Occlusion II in the node editor :S

Sensei
02-29-2012, 05:44 PM
enter name of node and press enter. That's what for LW v11 has filter string control.

It's in Shaders > Diffuse > Occlusion II

Philly85
02-29-2012, 05:57 PM
Thanks did that looks awesome when rendered, but still looks no depth to it and blurry when just baking to UV and putting the UV back on the model even with 1024 X 1024

Sensei
02-29-2012, 06:02 PM
But where blurry? In OpenGL viewport or in rerendering after putting back?

If it's viewport- press 'd' and in GL tab pick up texture resolution.

ps. Interpolated in Occlusion II node settings.

Philly85
03-01-2012, 02:38 AM
Works brilliantly thanks mate :D

Could I improve the texture itself by making the distance greater when baking than 100 um? If so what distance would you reccomend?

Sensei
03-01-2012, 10:25 AM
Surface baking camera is implemented as camera that flies above whole object. So f.e. spot at world_spot_position vector is rendered. Camera location will be world_spot_position + direction * distance. Ray is casted from that location to spot. There are cases like corners, dense geometry etc. where ray might not be hitting desired geometry. And only in such situations you need to adjust distance parameter.

Philly85
03-01-2012, 10:40 AM
That makes no sense to me mate im sorry :( I'm not very techincal on the teminology when it comes to Lightwave lol.

Will post some screenshots later.